Within
the next two weeks, the Iowa Senate will be debating
early-childhood-education legislation (HF877) to create new programs
that will provide voluntary preschool education for four-year-olds.
The concept is a good one, but the current proposal has some
problems.

Although
I have not been a dedicated reader of the Reader,
I have never seen criticism of it as "anti-business." (See
"Defining Pro-Business News," River
Cities' Reader
Issue 622,
February 28-March 6, 2007.) What people need to understand is that
criticism is often a great way for businesses to understand their
weaknesses and improve on them. Since a business can never
objectively look at itself, it should rely on the feedback of clients
and the community to identify and solve problems or expand and grow.

Davenport
has a glorious history of birthing newspapers - 150 in 171 years.
Yet even the mud-caked, hand-cranked press of the old Daily
Gazette
, which fell off the
gangplank into the river, could have printed a clearer picture than
the Quad-City Times
as to what Davenport citizens will lose if their council eliminates
all four standing committees.

It
was the Gisswold v. Connecticut
case in 1965 that struck down state laws prohibiting married couples
from using birth control; the law was ruled unconstitutional because
it violated marital privacy, a right protected by the Constitution.

On
August 4, 2005, the publisher of the River
Cities' Reader
, the
Quad-City Times
city-hall reporter, and an Argus/Dispatch
journalist strategically positioned themselves outside the doors of
City Hall, just as the city attorney unlocked them at 6 p.m.,
allowing the media through, then re-locking the doors behind them.
They had finally gained entrance to the elusive "Governance
Committee" meetings.

It was the Gisswold v. Connecticut case in 1965 that
struck down state laws prohibiting married couples from using birth control; the
law was ruled unconstitutional because it violated marital privacy, a right
protected by the Constitution.

The
article "Buildings That Breathe" makes some great points overall,
but the homesteading movement is not dead, and not just in
California. (See River Cities'
Reader
Issue 616, January
17-23, 2007.) There are many alternative building/energy conferences
one can go to in Wisconsin, Iowa, and Illinois focusing on straw-bale
construction, log construction, and alternative heating/energy for
the cabin set. There are many publications that cater to the modern
homesteader.

Last
week's remarks regarding Cingular were well-developed and
-thought-out. (See "The Cingular Deal: What Could Have Been,"
River Cities' Reader
Issue 613, December 27, 2006-January 2, 2007.) I, like you,
understand you can't force a company to choose downtown. I also
understand our city may have tried to encourage a downtown site.

I
spent yesterday researching biodiesel technology and companies to
invest in, and then I picked up the Reader and saw your
request for information on local stations that sell it.

These
links are to maps and lists of stations that sell E85 and biodiesel
across the country. Click here for E85 Stations. Click here for
Biodiesel stations.

I
just want to say that I think the corn-based biodiesel is just
setting corn farmers up for a big bust. Corn will yield 18 gallons of
biodiesel per acre, while algae will produce 10,000. (Yields of
common crops: click here.) I'm
putting my money on algae biodiesel.

The
controversy over "Happy Holidays" rather than "Merry Christmas"
requires that we examine what has happened to our right to "petition
the government for a redress of grievances." This is one of our
inherent and inalienable rights. We have a "property" in that
right. This means that any prior restraint placed on that right
constitutes a "taking of property without due process of law"
unless we are given something of equal value in return.

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